Letter to the Reader:


Romantic Notions


I have been asked often over the years, to explain myself.

Why are you not behaving like everyone else, is the question most implied. This question has haunted my existence on this earth. .As my years grow faster into something of which I have no knowledge, I now find myself reading more and more books about novelists during the 50’s,trying with honest intent, to find something to say to my many critics.

For reasons beyond me, I have always felt a close connection to these hopeful imaginers, a soul mate almost.

For example, this month I have been barely able to tear myself away from part two of Chester Himes’s autobiography, A Life of Absurdity, published in 1976.  I discovered it as a used, overlooked, $5.00 book at Harlem’s famed bookstore, Hue Man.

In many ways, Hines was one of the soul mates I just mentioned. This was the 50’s.  Chester Hines met the usual suspects after fleeing America for Europe: Sartre, Wright, Picasso, Baldwin, James Jones; but, in the end, there was nothing romantic about his grim, ex-pat experience in Paris, except, if he is to be believed, loads of sex and alcohol.

It was amazing to see a middle-aged man in his mid-fifties, with little money, unable to speak the language of the many European countries he lived in, his only real currency being the fact that he was a still handsome, published black novelist from America, carry on so.

(I won’t make a pissed-off comment about my own dismal sex life in boring, plugged -in, 21st Century America. No point in ruining my stellar reputation with careless asides, and scaring away my 400,000 visitors.)

Chester Himes’s  book, and thinking about past articles we have published in the Neworld Review  of the famed literary life of the 20th Century, I know that we have given you readers much to understand and think about.

We now know much about the few winners, those that we still celebrate. .

We also know more than perhaps we want to about the others. The truth is, back in the 50’s, as now, there was often little celebrating for most serious novelists, who labored in circumstances that few could tolerate.

Those romantic notions of Bohemian Bliss for the vast majority of novelists during that period, especially in Paris and New York’s Greenwich Village, were just that, romantic notions.

***

One of the unwritten mandates for  literary magazines, if they are going to be worthy of the name, is not only to point to that which is currently going on, but to look back, and see who was once overlooked.

You shouldn’t be in this business if you are not aware of the fate of Herman Melville and  Zora Neale Hurston. Both American novelists died poor, and unsung; and it was only after some literary editor, one day, years later, wandered in a bookstore and brought a used copy of someone’s amazing life, that both Hurston and Melville became who they now are.

Please note that we have a new section in our magazine. It is called Art News and it will be updated weekly with the latest from the world of art. We hope you enjoy this new addition.

Enjoy this issue of the Neworld Review.


Fred Beauford

Editor-in-Chief
/Publisher



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Neworld Review
Vol. 4 No 22 - 2011

Editor-in-Chief
/Publisher

Fred Beauford

Online Managing Editor

Richard D. O'Brien

Art Director

Bernie Rollins

Director of Photography

Kara Fox

Senior Editor

Jill Noel Shreve

Assistant Editor

Janet Garber


Contributing Writers


Jane M McCabe: History
Herb Boyd
Loretta H. Campbell
Sarah Vogelsong
Barbara Snow
Sally Cobau
Michael Carey
Brenda M. Greene
Jan Alexander
Lindsey Peckham: Art Beat
Molly Moynahan: A Writers' World

The Neworld Review is a publication of Fred Beauford, 3183 Wilshire Blvd,
Suite 196,
Los Angeles, CA. 90010.

Material in this publication may not be reproduced in whole or in part without permission. Opinions expressed by contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of the publishers.

Manuscripts should be accompanied by a self-stamped envelope. Online submissions are accepted at literarylife1@hotmail.com.

Neworld Review cannot be held responsible for unsolicited photographs or manuscripts.

All correspondence to:

Fred Beauford
Editor-in Chief/Publisher

Neworld Review
3183 Wilshire Blvd,
Suite 196,
Los Angeles, CA. 90010


E-mail



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Letters to the Editor

To the editor:


Just by accident I stumbled online on Fred Beauford’s memoir “The Day I Saved Michael Jackson Career.” Needless to say, it blew me away. I teach the bare basics of public relations to high school students in Washington State, near Seattle. I just want you to know that I am going to share this with my students, to show them what really goes on in the real world. Thanks for publishing such an enlightening article. And also, thanks for putting out such an intelligent publication; you are showing my young students that the web need not be just about sex and celebrities behaving badly.

Gordon Rice


This Month's Articles

REVIEWING

Reading My Father

by Alexandra Styron


Reviewed by Sally Cobau


book jacket

If staying up way too late reading is any indication of a book’s merit, then this blurry-eyed testimony--it’s the next morning—reflects the value of Reading My Father by Alexandra Styron.  Although the book is not by any means a mystery, Styron plays the part of curious detective as she deciphers the truth about her enigmatic father, the brilliant, cantankerous, Pulitzer-prize winning author of Sophie’s Choice.

Reading My Father is unique among the abundance of literary memoirs in both its tone and intentions.  Rather than being a “daddy dearest” tirade against an absent, sometimes frightening parent (when it certainly could have been—I’ll relay a few horrifying scenes in a moment), Styron acts like a cool archeologist, fixing an unblinking eye towards the truth.  In fact, in some ways the memoir is more of a biography, as Styron recreates the world that formed the writer, carefully and gracefully exploring her father’s formative years and even going back a couple of generations.
  In the aptly named Reading My Father most of the clues surrounding her father are offered in the form of the written word.  So Styron goes.....Read More



REVIEWING

Haki Madhubuti:
A Tradition of Liberation Narratives:New and Collected Poems
1966-2009

Reviewed by Brenda M. Greene


book jacket
if poetry is to have meaning
it must mean something
more than metaphor and simile
more than tree-talk and looking for gigs
more than competition in unrhymed free verse
serious to the bone of incomprehension
surely to land the poet
a guggenheim or macarthur genius grant.

Woven through Haki Madhubuti’s Liberation Narratives , is the theme of the poet as artist.  The role of the poet reflects a long term debate in the literary canon, a debate that was central to the Black Arts Movement where Madhubuti emerged in the 1960s as the progressive and.....Read More



REVIEWING

The Believing Brain: From Ghosts and Gods to Politics and Conspiracies — How We Construct Beliefs and Reinforce Them as Truths


by Michael Shermer


Reviewed by Michael Carey


book jacket

Why do people believe? We all believe in something, and I know I’ve sometimes asked myself, “How can someone think that way?” In Michael Shermer’s The Believing Brain, he explores that opening question through science. His answer is, “We form our beliefs for a variety of subjective, personal, emotional, and psychological reasons in the contexts of environments created by family, friends, colleagues, culture, and society at large: after forming our beliefs we then defend, justify, and rationalize them with a host of intellectual reasons, cogent arguments, and rational explanations. Beliefs come first, explanations for beliefs follow. I call this process belief-dependent realism, where our perceptions about reality are dependent on the beliefs that we hold about it. Reality exists independent of human minds, but our understanding of it depends upon the beliefs we hold at any given time.”

Dr. Shermer is the founding publisher of Skeptic magazine and worked on or penned nearly a dozen other books. He is well educated and versed on the subject he tackles in The Believing Brain. Through several ....Read More



REVIEWING

Joy for Beginners

by Erica Bauermeister


Reviewed by Janet Garber


book jacket

Twinkies

What a vogue there’s been the last few years in women writing novels about women banding together, mostly outside the purview of their men, to read books, fight Nazis, and accomplish great things.  Karen Joy Fowler’s Jane Austen Book Club (2007), a New York Times bestseller and later feature film, comes to mind, as does Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows” epistolary novels, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (2008).

In Joy for Beginners, five women (or six, or seven, depending how you count) come together and bond, first to form a baby-holding circle for Sara who’s coping with newborn twins and a toddler, and later to care for Kate who’s battling breast cancer and undergoing chemo.  Each of these different women has a story, naturally, many involving men who have run out on them, and each, it turns out, gets to go on a quest.  Whether they run off to Europe, train for a marathon, or get a tattoo, the implication is.....Read More



PORTFOLIO

Portfolio

by Kara Fox


The Life Changing Photography of Gil Garcetti


gil garcetti

Gil Garcetti is a man who changes lives. As former District Attorney of Los Angeles County, he was known for prosecuting many high profile cases, O..J..Simpson and the Menendez brothers among others. And now, as an urban photographer, he creates daunting images to motivate, educate and to help change the world for so.....Read More





REVIEWING

22 Britannia Road

by Amanda Hodgkinson


Reviewed by Sarah Vogelsong


book jacket

One unfortunate legacy of the Cold War is that even today, Americans' understanding of the Second World War is almost entirely focused on Western Europe and the Pacific theatre. Although the Iron Curtain has long since fallen, our knowledge of Eastern Europe has remained vague. Amanda Hodgkinson's first novel, 22 Britannia Road, lifts this veil to provide an occasionally fascinating glimpse into the Eastern European experience of the war through the eyes of a young couple, Janusz and Silvana Nowak, and their young son Aurek.

The story opens with Silvana and Aurek's arrival in England and reunion with Janusz and focuses on the .....Read More



ART NEWS

Art News


Update 7/19/11


The management of Kobo, a global leader in eReading with over 4.2 million users in more than 100 countries worldwide, has issued comments relating to the ongoing liquidation of Borders to clarify misconceptions about Kobo that have been inaccurately reported by the media and misunderstood by consumers. 

Kobo management provides the following facts regarding the company:

Kobo is a privately-held company that offers over 2.4 million eBooks, newspapers, and magazines -- one of the largest eReading catalogues in the world.

Readers from over 100 countries across the globe download and read using Kobo’s top-ranked eReading applications for iPad, iPhone, BlackBerry, Android, Windows and MacOS.  Kobo is the eReading application of.....Read More



SHORT STORY

Where Were You in the Blizzard?

A Short Story by Jan Alexander


It was a raw night. A January storm we’d be talking about the rest of the year; where were you that weekend it snowed three feet? That was back when Mike Dudley was tending bar at the Main Street Ale House. He was already getting beefy and chuckling at his own jokes, and he was only twenty-two. He watched a few regulars tromp in with the winds still biting at them, observed the snow clinging to their hats, and he said, “We don’t serve white people here,” then laughed because no one else did.

He was a little afraid of Gillian, the blowsy bar manager who was a witch. He imagined she could freeze him in that spot behind the bar forever. But she seemed to like him. She liked to tickle his love handles and search him for microphones. She called him Mike The Spy, because he’d gone to the C.I.A. and at first she didn’t know he meant Culinary Institute of America. That night she pointed him to the far end of the bar and said, “Go make friends with Andy Jensen.” The witch could read .....Read More



REVIEWING

The House of Wisdom
How Arabic Science Saved Ancient Knowledge and Gave Us the Renaissance

by Jim al-Khalili


Reviewed by Jane M. McCabe


book jacket

To counter the claim that they’ve fallen behind Western nations in science and technology, Muslim intellectuals say this wasn’t always so, that, in fact, during the 9th, 10th & 11th Centuries AD, the Abbasid Caliphate of Baghdad was the most advanced civilization in the world. Because Arab scholars of this time translated the works of Aristotle, Galen, Ptolemy and Euclid from Greek into Arabic, they in effect saved these ancient texts so that during the 14th, 15th, & 16th Centuries they could be re-translated into Latin in Spain and Italy, thus inspiring the Renaissance and the birth of scientific inquiry in the West, the engine that drove West’s dramatic technological advance.

Jim al-Khalili, a theoretical nuclear physicist at the University of Surrey in England, is an Iraqi—his father is a Shi’a Muslim of Persian descent and his mother is British. He grew up in Baghdad; though he hasn’t lived there since 1979, it formed.....Read More

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NOVEL

The African Gentleman


…and The Plot to Re-establish The New World Order


A Novel by Fred Beauford


Chapters 26-27


26

I found myself constantly thinking about Gladys. I have never had children and I couldn’t help but imagine the kind of offspring we would produce. I knew that I was about as African as you can get these daysand she was still a Northern European, despite whatever else she called herself.

A friend, who had a similar background to mine, and who married a woman a lot like Gladys, told me a  story that to me, that turned very sad, indeed.

“”I have three girls,” he explained, “and there it is still the white skin that gets all the attention. What are girls to do? What can I say to them when I myself preferred a white skin to sleep with?” he asked, with genuine anguish in his voice.

I had nothing to say to him, but his comments did stir something deep inside of me.


27

Whatever the case, Gladys is turning into one strange bird, but I suppose....Read More



ART BEAT

Art Beat- June 2011

by Lindsey Peckham


Cory Arcangel at the Whitney


cory arcangel

This show struck a particularly nostalgic nerve for me, as it spans three decades of video gaming, and any art exhibit with an excuse to put a Nintendo 64 on display is all right with me. The humor that Arcangel intertwines with a genuine commentary on the impermanence of technology is a potent and fun mix that is a refreshing kick-start to the summer season. There are also wire sculptures that were entirely created by machines whose moving parts were....Read More



REVIEWING

The Uncoupling

by Meg Wolitzer


Reviewed by Jill Noel Shreve


book jacket

People like to warn you,” writes Meg Wolitzer in her newest novel, The Uncoupling, “that by the time you reach the middle of your life, passion will begin to feel like a meal eaten long ago, which you remember with great tenderness.” With this opening line, Wolitzer triggers the first domino in a complex arrangement. As readers watch each piece fall into place, they will witness the delight of a spellbinding story.

Wolitzer sets The Uncoupling in the fictitious town of Stellar Plains, New Jersey, and the narrative follows a snippet of Robby and Dory Lang’s lives. These two midlife English teachers at ....Read More



REVIEWING

Poles Apart

by Audry R.L. Wyatt


Reviewed by Barbara Snow


book jacket

A good story shows us people struggling to change, to make life better. It makes us care about them enough to forget that we’re reading a story and inspires us to changes of our own. The characters in Poles Apart are lovable in their humanness and forgivable in their fears and confusion, particularly since the patterns with which they struggle result from some of the most horrendous experiences possible.

Chaim Schlessel spent nearly half of his formative teen years in Auschwitz and lost his family there. He committed to living his life fully and joyfully as the only way to make sure the oppressors failed....Read More